BLUEBIRD PLAYS ON AFTER BABY’S BIRTH

Wales On Sunday - - FRONT PAGE -

NEIL Warnock lauded Joe Ben­nett for his dis­play in Cardiff City’s stale­mate with Derby after the full-back spent the ma­jor­ity of the night be­fore the match look­ing after his new­born son, writes Ian Mitchel­more.

Ben­nett’s wife Cherie gave birth to lit­tle Jaxon Ché Ben­nett just two days be­fore the Bluebirds’ clash with the Rams, a game that ended all-square as Cardiff made sure they will keep hold of top spot over the in­ter­na­tional break.

And Warnock heaped praise on the left-sided de­fender for his per­for­mance against Gary Rowett’s side, adding that he had to calm as­sis­tant man­ager Kevin Black­well down when he yelled in­struc­tions at Ben­nett in the sec­ond half of the clash with the Rams.

“We had no (Aron) Gun­nars­son and no (Craig) Bryson, those two have been quite in­stru­men­tal,” said Warnock.

“(Joe) Rallsy wasn’t re­ally fit and Joe Ben­nett’s wife gave birth yes­ter­day, and I thought he had a fab­u­lous game in the cir­cum­stances and I said he should stay up more of­ten be­cause I don’t think he had a flaw to­day in his de­fen­sive du­ties.

“Blacky shouted he wanted him to get up the wing, and I said ‘Blacky, he’s been up all night, you can’t ex­pect mir­a­cles here.”

Cardiff car­ried a far greater at­tack­ing threat than the vis­i­tors who were well drilled and al­most snatched vic­tory at the death as Neil Etheridge pulled off a smart save to deny David Nu­gent from close range.

But Warnock’s troops had to set­tle for a share of the spoils, al­though a point ex­tended their un­beaten run to four matches and en­sured that the re­main at the sum­mit of the Cham­pi­onship after 11 league games.

And the York­shire­man – who cel­e­brates a year in-charge of the Bluebirds dur­ing the in­ter­na­tional break – ad­mits the Cardiff faith­ful can’t get too down­beat after their side’s draw with Derby.

“I’m only partly dis­ap­pointed be­cause I thought it was there to be win,” added the Cardiff boss.

Big match anal­y­sis: Sports pull­out

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